Where Are The Non-Chinese Heavy Rare Earths Going To Come From And Who’s Going To Buy Them?

[one_half]  [testimonial]China has at the most, if demand remains at present levels of growth, between 5 and 30 years of production of the HREEs remaining at present levels.[/testimonial] [/one_half] [one_half_last] A great article from Technology Metals Research discussing the imminent clampdown on illegal rare earths production in China, which could impact up to 40% of production and…


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Why the FT is wrong on commodity markets

The Financial Times’ flagship Lex column this morning picked up the theme of “financialization” (the notion that the financial part of the economy has overcome the ‘real’ part to the latter’s detriment) that has become a steady drumbeat in the left wing British press.  The full article is here.  In essence, it argues that the…


The Curious Rise of Real Asset ETFs

Five years ago, it was a pain in the neck to put together a real assets portfolio from public equities because there were so few easy proxies to use. All of the interesting ETFs seemed to be listed in Europe, thanks in part to the work of innovators such as ETF Securities. In my first…


Image Courtesy of Financial Times

Where Did All The Engineers Go?

At a time of 9%+ unemployment, it seems kooky that so many of the real assets sectors are short staffed.  As baby boomers prepare for retirement, there just aren’t that many skilled workers coming up through the ranks.  All oil executives said that a lack of skilled personnel was their biggest issue, in a 2009…


Image Courtesy of eHow

Glencore’s IPO; A Drop in the Bucket

The storied Swiss commodities trader Glencore launched its long anticipated IPO this week.  The company trades in metals, energy and agricultural commodities, and owns mines, farmland and energy assets.  It is the latter that have driven the need to IPO, as the company seeks to acquire further mines in particular. Media coverage has focused on…